SEATTLE - V2Green Equipment Will Monitor Vehicle’s Performance, Enable “Smart Charging”
New "grid-aware" technology from a year-old Seattle company called V2Green will be used to monitor the performance of 13 plug-in hybrid vehicles in a Seattle demonstration project and control their charging.
"We believe this project will show how plug-in hybrid technology can reduce our dependence on oil and cut greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change," Seattle City Light Superintendent Jorge Carrasco said.
The demonstration project, which is the largest of its kind in the country, is also helping to create local green-collar jobs, said Lynn Best, the utility’s director of environmental affairs. "V2Green’s selection for the metering technology shows how environmentally friendly operations can promote local economic development."
Under a contract with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory, V2Green will provide a logging system to collect real-time vehicle performance data. A cellular modem uploads the data to the V2Green server where it is archived and made available for the Idaho National Laboratory’s analysis.
The lab will monitor fuel efficiency, electricity usage and other vehicle performance measures on each of the 13 Toyota Priuses being converted so they can plug in to a standard electrical outlet and operate on battery power until the charge is used up and the vehicle resumes standard hybrid operations.
"This partnership is a here and now example of what''s possible for the future; a future of more efficient cars and trucks and reduced dependence on fossil fuels," U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-WA, said. "This type of technology means that consumers could use the existing electricity grid to power most of the vehicles on our roads at the equivalent cost of less than a dollar a gallon." Seattle City Light will operate three of the vehicles in the test. The City of Seattle will have one. The Port of Seattle will get two and the Puget Sound Clear Air Agency will get three vehicles. King County will test four plug-ins.
In addition to monitoring vehicle performance, V2Green’s technology also provides the capability of "smart charging." By providing intelligent, two-way communication between plug-in vehicles and the electric grid, Seattle City Light can control the timing, pace and extent of vehicle charging within driver-specified requirements. That means the utility can control its load requirements, ensuring that charging takes place during light load hours, protecting the distribution system and avoiding the need to buy power.
"V2Green is proud of Seattle’s position at the forefront of efforts to reduce global warming," said John Clark, chief executive officer of V2Green. "The Seattle demonstration project is an excellent example of the region’s visionary leadership and desire to use clean energy technology to cost-effectively operate a smart electrical grid, diminish our reliance on fossil-fuels and positively impact the climate."
V2Green technology also is being used to test two plug-in hybrids in Austin, Texas, and six from the fleet of Xcel Energy.
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